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Ankara ramps up tension in eastern Aegean with latest Navtex

Official Turkey continued to ratchet up the tension in the eastern Aegean by issuing a navigational telex (NAVTEX) on Saturday essentially surrounding the Greek isle of Kastellorizo, in the extreme southeast corner of the Aegean for four hours next Wednesday.

The notification claims that a search and rescue exercises by the Turkish navy will take place in international waters just outside the isle’s territorial waters.

The  development follows last week’s saber-rattling by Ankara, mostly threats of possible military action in case Athens exercises its right, under international law, to extend its territorial waters, as well as exploration by a Turkish survey ship in Cyprus’ EEZ – viewed as harassment to impede the island republic and its international partners from drilling in eastern Mediterranean.